Facts about Mercury
Mercury is the smallest of all the eight planets of the solar system. The diameter of this planet is 3,030 miles. It is also the closest planet to the Sun. Despite its close proximity to the Sun, the planet has extreme temperature fluctuations. During the day temperature can reach 450°C but at night it can be as low as -170°C. This temperature swing is the largest of any planet in the solar system. About 4 billion years ago, a huge asteroid slammed into Mercury that created a giant crater about 960 miles.
Quick Facts: –
- Mercury travels at a speed of 112,000 miles per hour along its elliptical orbit.
- The planet takes about 88 earth days to completely orbit the Sun. The circumference of its orbit is 35,983,125 miles.
- Scientists believe that there is ice present inside the craters of the planet.
- This planet has the thinnest atmosphere of all the planets in the solar system. It is not capable of trapping any heat from the Sun.
- Mercury rotates on its axis extremely slowly and takes 59 days to complete one rotation.
- This planet is very difficult to be seen in the earth’s night sky.
- It can only be seen just after the Sun has risen and just before the sun sets.
- It is the most cratered planet in the entire solar system.
- Despite its small size, the planet has a molten core and an active magnetosphere.
- On Mercury, the Sun appears two and a half times bigger than it appears on the earth.
- It is the second most-dense planet of the solar system after the earth.